An Israeli filmmaker is to get his six years in the making documentary released on how a number of Jewish woman are keeping Yiddish theatre alive in the United States.
Where once Yiddish theatre was part of many Jews’ social lives going out to see productions in New York, it has dwindled over the years as performers switched from Yiddish to mainstream productions and the famous theatres themselves being turned into other buildings and offices.
Dan Katzir’s Yiddish Theater: A Love Story will be screened in Los Angeles, New York and Tel Aviv in November and features some of the major names in modern Yiddish theatre including Shifra Lerer, Felix Fibich and Seymour Rechzeit.
The inspiration for the film came in 2000 when Katzir came across Zypora Spaisman, a Holocaust survivor in her 80s from Poland who invited him to watch a show she was in and over the next six years, Katzir got to know her and others in the Yiddish theatre community and the issues they face in keeping it alive.
According to Katzir: “It’s a feature length film about the extraordinary woman who kept Yiddish theater alive in the US into the 21st century. It’s also a poetic film about the power of the human spirit.”
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